The Philippine Association of Japanese Government Scholars (PHILAJAMES), under the Philippine Federation of Japan Alumni (PHILFEJA), significantly contributed to the critical success of the ASJA-ASCOJA-PHILFEJA’s ASEAN-Japan Relations Caught on FIRe (Fourth Industrial Revolution) Symposium. This international event co-hosted by the ASJA International (Asia Japan Alumni) of Japan and the ASEAN Council of Japan Alumni (ASCOJA) was held on 07 February 2020 at Makati Diamond Residences in Makati City, Philippines. The opening of the program was led by Junelyn A. Pagunsan, MBA (PHILFEJA President), H.E. KOJI HANEDA (Ambassador of Japan to the Philippines), as represented by the MS JUNKO SATO (Director, Japan Information and Culture Center, Embassy of Japan in Manila, Philippines), and H.E. GOTARO OGAWA (Asia Japan Alumni (ASJA) International Director for Japan).

The PHILAJAMES 2019-2020 set of officers and members played various roles in the critical the well-attended symposium. PHILAJAMES President Ms. Ma. Lavina Penaverde together with co-alumnus Brian D. Gozun, PhD (formerly) Dean of the Ramon V. del Rosario College of Business at De La Salle University (DLSU) Manila were the event hosts. PHILAJAMES then Secretary now Second Vice-President Neil H. Tan Gana, PhD headed the technical content committee, and was acknowledged as the “brains” of the symposium. Other PHILAJAMES Officers and members (YLP), namely Treasurer Ms. Hazel Saez, Jeanne Alay, Maria Theresa Capule-Navarro, and Cathy Biliran served as the backbone crew of the Program committee. Dai Sempai Cecilia Tolentino, also the PHILFEJA Secretary General was Head of Symposium Secretariat.

The PHILAJAMES Young Leaders Program’ sensei Professor YOSHINORI FUJIKAWA, Ph.D., (Associate Vice-President, Hitotsubashi University, National Center of Sciences, Tokyo, Japan) delivered the keynote address, entitled LENS 1-2-3 | Are You Ready for the Post-Digital Future? The talk contained a global-scale, multi-decade changes summary, described with three key words, namely: SHIFT | Towards Service Economy, MELT | Disappearing Industry Boundaries, and TILT | Economic Center of Gravity Moving from North to South. Then the talk shifted through the use of “LENSES” to exploring the “value creation and value capture” opportunities in the rapidly changing business environment.

The three thematic sessions which included, Session 1: Science & Technology – Core of FIRe, Session 2: Connectivity, IoT and Integrated Society, and Session 3: Human Resource and the Ecosystem were delivered by representatives of the ASEAN Council of Japan Alumni (ASCOJA). These three sessions were moderated by PHILAJAMES members Rodmyr F. Datoon, PhD (Assistant Professor, College of Agriculture and Food Science, Agricultural Systems Institute, Division of Agricultural Extension and Rural Studies, University of the Philippines Los Baños); Benjamin A. San Jose, PhD (Assistant Professor, Japanese Studies Program, School of Social Sciences, Ateneo de Manila University), and Ron Bridget T. Vilog, PhD (Associate Professor, International Studies Department, De La Salle University), are also active PHILAJAMES members.

The Concluding Remarks was delivered by another PHILAJAMES member Hon. HENRY CO (Former Governor, Board of Investments and President, Sikat Solar Challenge Foundation, Inc., Philippines). The talk served as the synthesis of the symposium was encapsulated as the “Continuing the Journey: Surviving FIRe with the 4Cs”. It contained the “How” to adapt and survive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, using the 4Cs traits identified as Character, Competency, Communication, and Collaboration.

This event recorded 190 registered participants, whose backgrounds were mainly from the academe, corporate, and government sectors. The PHILAJAMES Southern Luzon led by Chapter President Marloe V. Sundo, PhD of UPLB had a fairly large contingent registry of twenty. In total, PHILAJAMES composed about 25% of the total attendees.

by Neil H. Tan Gana, PhD

16th ASJA-ASCOJA-PHILFEJA Symposium
PHILAJAMES played key roles in the ASJA-ASCOJA-PHILFEJA’s ASEAN-Japan Relations Caught on FIRe (Fourth Industrial Revolution) Symposium

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